2014 Preakness Stakes Predictions
BALTIMORE, MD (The Spread) - The 2014 Preakness Stakes is just a mere hours away and with that, here's our predictions for today's race.
According to oddsmakers from online sports book Bovada.lv, California Chrome remains the favorite to win today's Preakness at 5/9 odds, while Social Inclusion has the next-best odds at 13/2. Bayern is 12/1, while Ride On Curlin and Kid Cruz are 14/1, respectively, and Dynamic Impact is 18/1. General A Rod, meanwhile, is 22/1, while Ria Antonia is 25/1 and both Ring Weekend and Pablo Del Monte are 28/1, respectively.
TO WIN: California Chrome (5/9)
Is there much value in today's favorite? No, but the rest of the field isn't that intriguing. Don't over-think this one. California Chrome has won five consecutive races, which includes the 2014 Kentucky Derby and the Santa Anita Derby, which were both Grade I races. No contender in this field has had the same success, and the same success in graded stakes and long distance races. He also will be ridden by a jockey in Victor Espinoza who has won the Preakness before and has a favorable post position at No. 3, which is close enough for California Chrome to get to the rail. While he might not become the first thoroughbred to win the Triple Crown since 1978, California Chrome should eventually pull away from this field of 10 at the Preakness.
TO PLACE: Ride On Curlin (14/1)
He drew an unfavorable post position on Wednesday as he'll have to start all the way outside at No. 10, but I still like Ride On Curlin's chances to finish in the money. He finished a disappointing seventh in the Kentucky Derby, but that only makes him a sleeper at 14/1. He finished second behind only Danza in the Arkansas Derby and took third in back-to-back starts in the Southwest Stakes and Rebel Stakes before that. One other reason to like Ride On Curlin today? His pedigree includes Curlin (hence the name), who won the Preakness Stakes in 2007. It's in his blood to finish well at Pimlico.
TO SHOW: Social Inclusion (13/2)
This is an intriguing horse. He won back-to-back races at a MSW and an Allowance to start his career and then finished third at the Grade I Wood Memorial behind Wicked Strong and Samraat. The Wood Memorial run is what makes Social Inclusion an interesting sleeper, as he proved that he can handle both the graded stakes competition as well as the distance. At the end of the day I don't see him pulling off the upset today, but I'm willing to bet he finishes in the money. His pedigree includes Pioneerof The Nile, who won the Santa Anita Derby and placed second in the 2009 Kentucky Derby before posting a dud in the Preakness, finishing 11th.